Chaeli Mycroft was born in Cape Town on 30 August 1994. She graduated from the University of Cape Town in 2015 with majors in Politics and Social Development and in December 2016 gained her Honours degree in Social Policy and Management. She is currently reading for an MPhil degree in Human Rights Law at UCT.
Chaeli is an internationally recognised ability activist having been awarded the International Children’s Peace Prize in 2011, the Medal for Social Activism from the Nobel Peace Laureates in 2012 and in 2013 she accepted the World of Children Youth Award in New York.
On 3 September 2015 Chaeli became the first female quadriplegic to summit Mt Kilimanjaro. She also competes in wheelchair dancing on the international stage, is the first adaptive (assisted wheelchair) athlete in 95 years to finish the iconic 89km Comrades Marathon (2016) and get her back-to-back medal (2017). Chaeli has also completed 4 Cape Town Cycle tours.
Through teamwork you can accomplish anything. Chaeli believes in living a full and rich life. She is an adventurer, a conqueror of limitations and constantly seeks new ways of overcoming perceived barriers and boundaries.
The Chaeli Campaign
The Chaeli Campaign is a social justice foundation founded in August 2004 by 5 girls between the ages of 6 and 12 to raise R20 000 for Chaeli Mycroft’s motorised wheelchair. They accomplished their mission in just 7 weeks by selling cards with their artwork on them. What started as a campaign to mobilise their sister and friend has culminated in a fully-fledged social justice foundation that provides a holistic range of services to support differently-abled catalysts of change. The Chaeli Campaign advocates for policy change and system reform to grow more ability-focused and inclusive communities. This foundation is based in Cape Town, South Africa, but has a global footprint with founder, Chaeli Mycroft, recognised as a powerful human rights defender and ability activist. Each year the lives of 7000+ direct beneficiaries are positively impacted through the 7 programmes run by The Chaeli Campaign, with Inclusive Education, Adaptive Sport and Advocacy through Training and the Arts forming cornerstone projects.
The Chaeli Foundation (USA) will be launched in September 2017 with Philadelphia as its headquarters. This organization is a sister-foundation to The Chaeli Campaign (SA) and its start-up projects will be Adaptive Sports, Youth Leadership/Empowerment and Advocacy & Training. Its main focus is to grow social cohesion and inclusion of children, youth and adults with disabilities through its projects. It advocates for opportunities for people with disabilities to be fully included in family and community life – to the benefit of all members of these social units – and will work globally with The Chaeli Campaign towards realizing the Global Goals for Sustainability – especially Goal 10: Reducing Inequalities.
Disability and the rights of people with disabilities is too often assumed and silent – and therefore not fully addressed through all the Global Goals. The Chaeli Campaign and Chaeli Foundation highlight the right of people with disabilities to contribute meaningfully to all aspects of life to enrich our world.